Katy Perry didn't hold back during an interview to discuss her shoe line and partnership with Global Brands Group on Monday night. She offered her take on a range of topics, from politics to pop culture to the Internet, and from Rihanna to Jessica Alba to her drive-time commitment to boyfriend Orlando Bloom.
On fashion: "I've had such an interesting relationship with fashion. They don't know what to make of me because in the beginning years I think I was a parody of fashion and I would always lean more toward personality or emotional pieces, things that would say, 'larger than life.' It's a lot of the stuff today that's really popular in youth culture — colorful, bright, crystaled, glittered, bedazzled. It's all personality pieces because everyone feels like an individual with something to offer. Social media is a part of that because everyone has their own stage, so they wear their costume. I'd like to make a contribution in the fashion world with affordable stuff that can help accessorize a personality. I feel super lucky; I can get anything I want now, but a lot of times you will see me mix. It's gonna be a high-end or a vintage, you just can never tell. It's all about style, really. I think five years ago it was more about label and price and now it's about personality."
On business: "I'm super-collaborative in a lot of ways. I obviously have final say on everything and sometimes I'm wrong. I would say I'm right seven times out of 10. Three times out of 10 I make mistakes but I learn from them — but I'm not a monster. I take it in. Especially with people who have been in this industry longer than I have and who know what they are talking about. I'm just a creative, but thankfully, I use both the right and left sides of my brain so I'm not just head in the clouds. It's, like, 'I know it costs this much and we're going to distribute it that way.' And I'm always going to place people around me who are smarter than I am in that capacity. We all have a conversation and best shoe wins, just like best song wins."
On politics: "Listen, I think that we are all ready for some radical change. I think that nothing is perfect, but we are all ready for transparency, radical change and empowering each other and individuality and coming together. I am definitely looking forward to that. I just shot the Rock the Vote campaign commercial, which is a bipartisan campaign. The younger people sometimes don't feel like their vote matters. They think it's all rigged, but it's not true — you have to physically go out and vote. Not everything is perfect and there should be definite updates on how we vote and the whole system in general. I appreciate the conversation that Bernie [Sanders] brought to the table. In some crazy ways I appreciate…I wouldn't say appreciate…I see the validity of all extremes and conversations because they are making things progressive and they are making things more clear. So it doesn't feel like history is repeating itself. It doesn't feel so 'political.' It's not mundane. It doesn't feel like voices aren't being heard, so I think we are all in for a big change. The fact of the matter is it's the chicken or the fish. You gotta pick one if you wanna eat."
On role models: "Who do I admire? Probably who I'm following on Instagram. I think Rihanna has done it well. She has such a great eye and ear and she definitely has that foresight. Her relationships with Puma and Dior and whatever is coming next, feels like she's a pusher of her industry. With Beyoncé and Rihanna it's very obvious they know what they are doing and you can see that they are micromanaging as well. They are multitaskers. I love what Charlotte Tilbury has done. I'm a really big fan of this girl Isamaya who does these makeup creations that are like art pieces. I really want to work with her in the future. I think Jessica Alba is pretty cool in the way she is doing her Honest brand because now we have an affordable choice for organic and babies and everyone is having the conversation about health and what are ingesting. I think she's gonna do really well with that."
On mastering the Internet: "You get dopamine every time you post something and you get that reaction. But it's weird being the person that has the most followers. I know what that animal is and it's a dance, you know? I do all my posting which you can tell because sometimes I have horrible grammar or typos or I post late. In the beginning you're, like, 'I have this ambition and no one can tell me no' and you get it, right? Then there's this period where everyone has a say and then the whole world has a say. Everyone's talking, everyone's chatting then you're, like, 'Whoa ... Did I start these conversations or am I part of the convo or what is this?' So it does like seep into a slow drip and at a certain point if you don't cut it off it will eat you alive. Or you cut if off and you get it back. I am no longer hanging onto the rocket and riding for dear life. I'm standing and surfing the rocket. I got on top of it. I'm riding it like a [expletive] cowboy at a rodeo now."
On handling fame: "It's a trust your gut thing and it's not really steered me that wrong. I've always been very in tune with my intuition. Thankfully and I've got great family and friends that keep me grounded. It's all about balance because to me this whole career, or this opportunity, is a total inhuman experiment. I feel like most people don't survive it. They either lose their mind or they die. Sometimes I feel like I'm in a burning car and everybody's just watching and eating popcorn and I have to figure out how to safely get out and have grace and balance. It's about how I can best express myself and not get lost in all the noise."
On Santa Barbara: "I still spend a lot of time there because I grew up there. I grew up in the poorest part of Santa Barbara. People associate it with the French Riviera, almost Monte Carlo, like beautiful American rich people, and we were like super poor. Actually my boyfriend didn't even believe me and I was, like, 'I'm going to drive you by my house' and you can Google Earth it. I basically had a crazy church-filled, God squad upbringing. I lived on food stamps and a food bank in Santa Barbara, which is like a crazy juxtaposition to live in beauty and still have a bit of a struggle, but that's just because of the nature of the church. Anyway, Santa Barbara, I love it. I make a lot of music there 'cause it's only an hour and fifteen minutes away from L.A. at the right times and the energy level is so dramatically different — people, priorities, community, connection. I also have a local thing where they're, like, 'Oh, you're one of us. You just went out and hustled, but you're still one of us.' I also dress super normal and everything."